As any of my regular readers know, I struggle with postpartum depression. Every. Single. Day. But I am blessed in that I am lucky enough to have known about the disease and how to get help, and I have health insurance that covers my visits, at least partially.
But too, too many women don't have what I have. They don't know about the disease. They think that they are alone. They don't have health insurance, or what they have is inadequate to cover what they need to get better. And this is a crime.
Only 15% of women get the help they need for postpartum depression and related disorders. Education is needed for both women and healthcare providers, so that this disease can be effectively and quickly identified and treatment administered. And women and families who can't afford it should never, ever be at risk because they can't pay for treatment.
Now, Congress is finally doing something to help those in need. Senators Durbin and Menendez have introduced the Mothers' Act, S. 3529, in the Senate. This bill will provide much needed funding for education and screening for postpartum depression, and will also fund research into diagnosis and treatment, as too little is known about the disease and the treatments that are available are sometimes not effective, or have side effects that lead to women discontinuing treatment. Improvements need to be made.
Please join me, BlogHers Act, Postpartum Support International, and Postpartum Progress in supporting this bill. Look at these links to find out how to contact your senator and tell him or her that supporting this bill is important to you. Together, our voices are strong and can't be ignored.
Those who have no voice, or think they have no strength, need our help.